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Gov. Reynolds offers short-term relief to the arts

The coronavirus has taken a hard toll on the arts industry - so much so - Gov. Kim Reynolds is offering financial support to arts venues, cultural organizations and creative workers who have lost money or business due to the pandemic. Artists open up about how they have been coping with a new reality.
Posted at 6:43 PM, Dec 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-03 19:43:52-05

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Ia. (KMTV) — From financial losses to personal ones, artists say this pandemic has presented countless challenges. Danna Kehm - the CEO of Pottawattamie County Arts Culture and Entertainment - says the Governor's short-term relief is a band-aid to the issue. Her non-profit has lost $300,000 in revenue, ticket sales, alcohol sales, rentals, sponsorships and memberships.

"We're going to need another stimulus package, just like everybody else, there's no end in sight as far as normal to us," Kehm said.

Painter Cindy Mathiasen worries about the future.

"Those things go through your mind," Mathiasen said. "Am I going to be able to sustain something that I love during this time of uncertainty?"

Despite all the hardships, artists say creativity, imagination and innovation are needed now more than ever.

"We all have something to give - and I think what I give is my art," Mathiasen said.

The state has allocated 7 million dollars of federal Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act - or CARES Act funding - for the arts. The program provides relief grants ranging from $1,000 to $250,000 for arts and cultural organizations struggling to make ends meet.